Justice can be an expensive thing. It is the process of presenting evidence in Court and having the court decide in your favor, i.e. receiving a court judgment. A court judgment is a public acknowledgment that you are right and the other side is wrong. This then usually results in your receiving a just reward against the other side, typically in the form of money damages.
Most people would agree that the best thing to do with a lawsuit is to avoid it.. And the best way to avoid a potential inheritance dispute for your loved ones is by planning appropriately and making sure everything is up to date in the form of a properly executed will or living trust. Take a look at my Frequently Asked Questions page for more on this.
Now, don’t get me wrong, proper estate planning isn’t necessarily going to prevent every possible inheritance lawsuit imaginable. But it does go a long way in making sure you define what you own, who is to receive what you own, how they are to receive it and when they are to receive it . I like to say that that will take care of half the problem. The other half is keeping it up to date. Periodically having it reviewed tends to take care of the second half.
Those who ignore this concept are really courting disaster for their family. Keep in mind that an issue with the concept of justice is it can oftentimes be very expensive. Will you receive more from the lawsuit financially than you put into it? For example, if you spend $25,000 on a lawsuit, you want to receive a lot more than $25,000 out of that suit to compensate you for your risk. Justice pays no attention to the financial costs of a case. If a person wants justice they must be willing to spend as much time, emotion and money as necessary to achieve that result, which can often be an unfair result from a financial viewpoint. And don’t forget, just because a case goes to trial does not mean that you will win. There’s always two sides (or more) to every story and event. That’s one of the risks of fighting for justice, you could lose not just money but all the time, energy and effort spent throughout the process. Bottom line, try to avoid the lawsuit in the first place.